With its inclusion in the House GOP health plan released last month, the idea of converting Medicare into a premium support system once again features prominently in Capitol Hill policy discussions about the future of Medicare, the federal health insurance program that covers 57 million seniors and people with disabilities.…
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Among beneficiaries who died in 2014, Medicare spent significantly more per person on medical services for seniors in their late sixties and early seventies than on older beneficiaries, according to a new data note from the Kaiser Family Foundation. The analysis comes at a time when physicians can now be…
Medicare Spending at the End of Life: A Snapshot of Beneficiaries Who Died in 2014 and the Cost of Their Care
This data note provides a snapshot of Medicare beneficiaries who died in 2014 and their Medicare spending at the end of life. It examines Medicare per capita spending trends over time since 2000 and in 2014, both overall and by type of service, for beneficiaries in traditional Medicare who died in a given year compared to those who survived the year.
Prescription drugs play an important role in medical care for 57 million seniors and people with disabilities, and account for $1 out of every $6 in Medicare spending. This series of charts presents and explains basic facts about prescription drug spending specifically within the context of Medicare. These 10 charts include information on current and projected Medicare prescription drug spending, out-of-pocket prescription drug costs for beneficiaries, the effects of the closing Part D “doughnut hole” and introduction of costly specialty drugs on beneficiary costs, and public opinion on prescription drug-related policy options.
Modifying Traditional Medicare’s Benefit Design Could Reduce Federal Spending But With Cost Tradeoffs Between Beneficiaries and The Federal Government
Revamping traditional Medicare’s benefit design and restricting “first-dollar” supplemental coverage could reduce federal spending, simplify cost sharing, protect against high medical costs, decrease out-of-pocket spending for many beneficiaries, and provide more help to those with low incomes — but would be unlikely to achieve all of these goals simultaneously.
This report examines an approach to reforming Medicare that has been a focus of Congressional hearings and featured in several broader debt reduction and entitlement reform proposals, and was included in the June 2016 House Republican health plan. The analysis models four different options for modifying Medicare’s benefit design, all of which include a single deductible, modified cost-sharing requirements, a new cost-sharing limit, and a prohibition on first-dollar Medigap coverage. The analysis models the expected effects on out-of-pocket spending by beneficiaries in traditional Medicare, and assesses how each option is expected to affect spending by the federal government, state Medicaid programs, employers, and other payers, assuming full implementation in 2018.
In this Wall Street Journal Think Tank column, Drew Altman discusses Medicare having a low profile this campaign season, and whether the House Republican health reform plan and Medicare trustees’ report this week will push it more into the spotlight as an issue.
A Study of Medicare Advantage Plan Networks in 20 Counties Finds That Plans Include About Half of All Hospitals in Their Area
A Kaiser Family Foundation analysis of private Medicare plan networks finds that Medicare Advantage plans include about half of area hospitals in their network, on average, while one in five plans have no Academic Medical Center in-network. Among plans in an area with a National Cancer Institute-designated cancer center, more…
This report takes an in-depth look at Medicare Advantage plans’ hospital networks. The analysis draws upon data from 409 Medicare Advantage plans serving beneficiaries in 20 diverse counties that together accounted for about one in seven (14%) Medicare Advantage enrollees nationwide in 2015. The report examines the size and composition of plans’ hospital networks, the variation across counties, the inclusion of Academic Medical Centers and NCI-Designated Cancer Centers, and the relationship between network size and other plan features, including premiums, quality star ratings, per capita Medicare spending, parent organization, and plan tax status.